Fashion & Beauty

Despite the stupidity of a few male fashion designers, I love fashion. When it’s not about starving oneself to fit into a size zero or saying that Barbie Doll’s ankles are too fat, fashion is about self expression, creativity and beauty. But over the years, there have been several fashion trends that were, er, stupid. Here are ten of them:

Knee Warmers

7894993 Featured by French designer Vanessa Bruno in her Spring 2010 collection. If fashion these days is about looking long and lean, then this does exactly the opposite – it visually cuts your legs to make them look shorter and fuller.



Schoolgirl Look for Adult Women

Schoolgirl lookIt’s difficult to decide what I hate more – when women are called “girls” or when women are expected to look like girls. What’s the point of this look anyway? Catering to men’s fantasy of having sex with a minor?? I sure hope not.



Leg Warmers

Leg WarmersAn incredibly hot trend in the eighties, leg warmers have been showing up here and there in some collections. Unless you’re a dancer and really need them to prevent injury, you just look stupid when you’re wearing leg warmers.



Harem Pants

Harem PantsHarem pants are not just incredibly ugly – they will make your figure look hideous too. Wearing harem pants is basically an excellent way to visually add ten pounds and take five inches off your frame.



Huge Shoulder Pads

dynastyBack in the eighties, women totally fell for this look because they believed it would make them look more powerful. There have been a few attempts to revive shoulder pads in past years. Thankfully, none of them succeeded.



Baggy Pants

baggy_pantsPerhaps it’s just me, but the look of male underwear peeking above pants that are so big they practically fall to their knees? Not very attractive. I’ve already mentioned my disapproval of the (mostly) teen fashion of baggy pants on this blog, and while patient readers have explained the origins of this fashion trend, I still find it incredibly stupid.



Butt Writing

butt writingButt Writing is about making sure everyone notices your butt. In some cases, it’s about turning your behind into a walking advertisement for certain brands. I’ve already complained about this fashion trend. How come it’s still here?



Extremely Low Rise Jeans

low rise jeansThe main problem with extremely low rise jeans: this fashion trend often provides innocent bystanders with way, way TMI.



Torn Jeans

torn jeansThe designers call them “distressed” jeans, much like car salespeople are using “pre-owned” rather then “used,” I imagine. I still say it makes absolutely no sense to pay $225 for a pair of ruined pants.



Statement Shoes

statement shoesSure, we all love to make a strong statement and look fabulous, but when the statement is made by wearing shoes that seriously increase your chances of breaking an ankle, one has to wonder, is it a beautiful look, or are we looking here at yet another STUPID FASHION TREND?

Low rise jeans have been all the rage during the past few years. Thankfully, the trend seems to be cooling off.

While a moderate low rise is fine, the fashion trend of wearing tight, extremely low-slung jeans, has been subjecting innocent citizens to the following unfortunate looks for too many years now:

1. Visible Butt Cracks

butt-crackPhoto credit: tandabat42

butt-crackPhoto credit: Malingering

2. Thong Underwear Peeking

whale-tailPhoto credit: Malingering

3. Giant male underwear peeking

low-rise-jeansPhoto credit: lobstar

4. Muffin Tops

muffin-topPhoto credit: Malingering

5. Hairy Bellies, EWWW

hairy-bellyPhoto credit: Malingering

I do own several pairs of moderately low rise jeans. I wear them with a belt, so as not to subject others to things they really shouldn’t be subjected to:


Recently, however, I bought a pair of higher-rise jeans, and I must say low-rise jeans do have one big advantage over higher-rise jeans: they don’t put pressure on your tummy after you’ve eaten!

I went to the movies with my higher-rise jeans, and after eating a bag of popcorn (the bag marked as “Small” but that’s small in American standards, which is really quite large), I felt really uncomfortable! I’ve been wearing lower-rise jeans for so long that I forgot how it feels to wear pants that actually cover most of your tummy.

So there. Low rise jeans are not all bad.

Still, I’m grateful that the extremely low-cut version seems to be a thing of the past now. We can all sigh a collective sigh of relief. On to the next stupid fashion trend.

Teen fashion really confuses me.

Could someone please let me know how THIS:

Photo by Malingering

Has become the epitome of style, and the only acceptable way for teen boys to wear pants?

Thank you.

Butt Writing

by MomGrind

Butt writing is one of the weirdest fashion trends of recent years.

pink-butt-writingPhoto credit: Fire Monkey Fish

Why would anyone want to wear an advertisement on their behind?

bcbg-butt-writingPhotos from Malingering unless noted otherwise.

Even if it’s not an ad, I’m not sure how tasteful or appropriate it is to display words on one’s derriere (By popular demand in comments and emails, post edited to add a JUICY butt).

juicy asswriting.JPG

Especially when the words are “GET LOW”


Or “Dig It”


Or “Aloha”


Or “Babe”




Most Flattering Jeans

by MomGrind

Trying to find truly flattering jeans? Finding a good pair of jeans is not always easy. Which jean style is the most flattering? Which is best avoided? And what do all these terms mean, anyway? Here’s a quick guide to jeans.

Flared Jeans

Flared jeans are narrow along the thigh and knee, widen at the calf and have a wide leg opening. They look great with fitted tops and platform shoes that balance out the flare. The flare on the bottom has a slimming effect on the thighs.
VERDICT: Go ahead.

flare-jeansPhoto credit: Nic Name

Boot Cut Jeans

Bootcut jeans are cut straight at the thigh and flare a little at the ankles. They have a slimming, elongating effect, especially when worn with high heels.
VERDICT: go ahead.

boot-cut-jeansPhoto credit: gohsuket

Skinny Jeans

Skinny jeans are tight jeans that end in a narrow leg opening. Generally, skinny jeans look best on long-legged boyish figures. It’s best to avoid them if you have a fuller figure. This young woman is wearing them very well, with high heels and a tunic:

skinny-jeansPhoto credit: gohsuket

But they can be seriously unflattering:

Photo credit: Malingering

VERDICT: Proceed with caution.

Straight Leg Jeans

Straight Leg Jeans are cut with a narrow, straight leg. The leg does not become wider at the calf or ankles. Just like skinny jeans, these are flattering on boyish figures, not so much on fuller figures.
VERDICT: proceed with caution.

straight-leg-jeansPhoto credit: hyena-in-petticoats

Mom Jeans or tapered jeans

These have a generous cut along the thighs and the behind and become narrower toward the ankle. This look is very unflattering because it makes the thighs and behind look bigger.
VERDICT: best avoided.

mom-jeansPhoto credit: glindsay65

Boyfriend Jeans

Boyfriend jeans are cut with a large waist, loose legs and large pockets. They’re a good choice for fuller figures. Wear them with a fitted top to avoid a slouchy look.
VERDICT: go ahead.

boyfriend-jeansPhoto credit: Idhren

Low Rise Jeans

Low rise jeans are intended to sit low on, or below, the hips. This popular style is flattering only if the waist is not too tight (if it is, you will get a muffin top), and especially if you have a flat or an almost flat tummy.
VERDICT: proceed with caution.

low-rise-jeansPhoto credit: luby

Make sure that the rise is not so low that you show more than you probably intended to show:

super-low-rise-jeansPhoto credit: smadness

High-Waist Jeans

On the opposite spectrum from low rise jeans, these have a waist that is cut high and fully covers the tummy.  These should be worn with a fitted top and look great on an hourglass figure. The main problem with this cut: it makes the thighs and behind look bigger.
VERDICT: proceed with caution.

high-waist-jeansPhoto credit: Minirobot

Wide-Legged Jeans

These are cut narrow in the waist, wide along the hips and thighs and have a wide leg opening. This is a forgiving style if you have large hips and thighs. Just like boyfriend jeans, it’s best to pair them with a fitted top. This style is not flattering to very short women since it tends to make them look even shorter.
VERDICT: proceed with caution.

wide-leg-jeansPhoto credit: coutorture

Distressed, torn, or ripped Jeans

It’s a trend that I don’t really get, but it’s very popular.

This is too much:

very-torn-jeansPhoto credit: malingering

This is too, but she’s young and gorgeous and can pull it off:

cute-torn-jeansPhoto credit: Akbar Simonse
VERDICT: best avoided.

Colored Jeans

These don’t have the classic jean look, and can’t be paired with any color, but they can certainly make a statement.
VERDICT: proceed with caution.

colored-jeansPhoto credit: gohsuket

Cropped Jeans or Capri jeans

Cropped jeans cover about three quarters of the leg. In Capri jeans, the jean ends just below the knees. The main problem with this cut is that it tends to shorten the legs, so it is best worn by women with long, thin legs. So, while the cut looks good on her:

cropped-jeansPhoto credit: Malingering

It is not very flattering on her:

Photo credit: A Candid Life

VERDICT: proceed with caution.

My favorite jean style: moderately low rise, flared jeans. While bootcut is a classic, always-appropriate style, it seems a bit too conservative and lacks the flare that flared jeans have. 🙂

Ugly shoes alert!


Because they’re ugly. Duh.

uggsPhoto credit: Menlo School

Gladiator Sandals

They make the foot appear wider and the leg shorter. Why would anyone want to do that?

gladiator-sandalsPhoto credit: gohsuket

Tall platform shoes

So impractical, it’s plain silly.

platform-shoesPhoto credit: sheilaellen


Crocs: You either love them or hate them. I tend to err on the side of hate.

crocsPhoto credit: Joe Shlabotnik

Flower Boots

A style (if you can call it that) that renders me speechless.

flower-boots1From heels

Cowboy Boots

Classic ugly shoes. As demonstrated in the photo, these are especially lovely when worn with SHORTS.

cowboy-bootsPhoto credit: rossination

Unconventional Heels

So yes, this could be just a matter of convention, but to me these heels look ugly.

funny-heel1From Zappos

High Heeled Sneakers


high-heeled-sneakersPhoto credit: Markus Kolb

Leopard Boots

The print, the color, the whole thing… it’s mind-blowing, and not in a good way.

leopard-shoesPhoto credit:  pain amp1013

People make lots of fashion mistakes. Short shorts, muffin tops and Crocs for adults are just a few of them. Here are the top ten fashion mistakes you should aim to avoid.

1. Short shorts

short shorts
Short shorts can look great on the right body, but please don’t go too short.

2. Sandals with socks

sandals with socks.JPG

Not a good look.

3. Muffin-top jeans

muffin top.JPG

This woman’s weight is normal, but her tight jeans are creating a very pronounced “muffin top.” The guy doesn’t look too hot either, with his cropped pants and socks.

4. Speaking of shorts with dress socks


NOT an attractive look, guys.

5. Adults wearing Crocs

This is cute:

This is not:

6. Wearing a racer-back or a strapless top with a regular bra


Even if the straps are supposedly “invisible.”

7. Some men will disagree, but thongs peeking from too-low-rise jeans are tacky, not sexy 


8. Jeans that are too torn, or that are torn in the WRONG places


9. Oversized clothes


I don’t get the teen fashion of wearing very baggy pants. Wearing baggy clothes – especially tops – was my own fashion crime during my early twenties.

10. Too much makeup


She needs to lose the green eyeshadow and wear a lighter shade of lipstick.
Because less really is more.

Photo credits: eek the cat; heather; malingering; ryanne; showbizsuperstar; sunface13; Bonnie and Victor Cats; Jason Anfinsen; Kevin Mosley; berquis; Russell Reno